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Lord Smith Not Resigning

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Just seen Lord Smith of the Environment Agency get accosted by journalists and a slightly irate farmer declare he wasn't resigning as there's work to be done.

Just a pity he wasn't doing any work before everything got flooded.

Today he was on a orchestrated meet and greet and it seems his plan became slightly unstuck by chance.

I'm sure as head of the Environment Agency nothing will be his fault.

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These are not ordinary times we live in.

This bout of rain and storms is unprecedented.

It is impossible to protect every home in the country and some are going to get wet. Those that get wet time and time again might have to stay uninhabited.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/parts-of-east-anglia-could-be-abandoned-to-the-sea-forever-after--recent-floods-9084145.html

Where's all the cover of East Anglia?

Repairing or improving flood defences is so expensive that areas of countryside which are still under water could be abandoned if no one lives there.

“We must prioritise repairs to flood defences that protect homes and communities and we are getting on with this,” said an Environment Agency spokeswoman.

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I'm paraphrasing but this, in essence, is what he said:-

First priority is to protect Westminster and politicians

Second priority is to protect the City of London and the bankers

Third priority is....er......the peasants in the provinces. But we don't really care about them.

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We have neglected our vital infrastructure in areas of the country for years...paying out only the minimum possible and then praying everything holds together, and walls stay standing....rivers always used to be regularly dredged meaning there would not have been such a big build up of silt, this would have helped the rivers to run more freely, so take more water out to sea......in many of the areas affected the people are conservative voters....I don't think they will be too happy to be left on a limb ignored, neglected and without assistance. ;)

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TBH the calls for him to go are just stupid.

Some nimby was on radio two moaning that now, not only had they got their own water, now they were getting everyone elses water.

Its raining...its raining a lot...THAT is not something in the power of a minister in charge of a department with 20 year plans.

FFS!

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We've had the wettest winter ever recorded and over 99% of rivers in the country are proving to have been pretty well managed by the Environment Agency. It seems to me that the EA are doing a great job in the most challenging circumstances. The EA has been warning that extreme weather will become more common for years but are constantly battling against those in 'denial' or planning authorities that continue to build on floodplains. The EA also has statutory duties with regard to wildlife conservation and providing recreation, which is not always easy to reconcile with flood risk management. With regard to the areas that have been hit by floods, many people make the active choice to live there. They know the risks, they take a chance. Most of the time they are great places to live. There will always be flooding whether its Cumbia, Lewes, Shrewsbury, York, Boscastle and now Somerset. The EA should not be expected to guarantee there will be no flooding and to apologise if there is. With regard to flooding in Somerset, the county name actually means 'summer settlement'. For centuries much of the land that was below sea level was given over to winter floods. With climate change now so obvious and the vast energy costs associated with drainage and dredging, perhaps this shows us a glimpse of the future too.

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TBH the calls for him to go are just stupid.

Some nimby was on radio two moaning that now, not only had they got their own water, now they were getting everyone elses water.

Its raining...its raining a lot...THAT is not something in the power of a minister in charge of a department with 20 year plans.

FFS!

Agreed, he's only a man, what do you expect him to be able to do - turn back the tide?:rolleyes:

It's nature at work, more powerful than mankind. The water has to go somewhere.

On the subject of flood defence works they are spending many millions in a small town near me on reinforced concrete culverts etc.

I just think to myself ' very good, but that's just sentenced the next town downstream to the inevitable and a bit more'.

Unless we want to defend every stream & river in the land with similar multi million pound schemes from inland to sea, we have to expect extraordinary flooding during extraordinary rainfall.

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We've had the wettest winter ever recorded and over 99% of rivers in the country are proving to have been pretty well managed by the Environment Agency. It seems to me that the EA are doing a great job in the most challenging circumstances. The EA has been warning that extreme weather will become more common for years but are constantly battling against those in 'denial' or planning authorities that continue to build on floodplains. The EA also has statutory duties with regard to wildlife conservation and providing recreation, which is not always easy to reconcile with flood risk management. With regard to the areas that have been hit by floods, many people make the active choice to live there. They know the risks, they take a chance. Most of the time they are great places to live. There will always be flooding whether its Cumbia, Lewes, Shrewsbury, York, Boscastle and now Somerset. The EA should not be expected to guarantee there will be no flooding and to apologise if there is. With regard to flooding in Somerset, the county name actually means 'summer settlement'. For centuries much of the land that was below sea level was given over to winter floods. With climate change now so obvious and the vast energy costs associated with drainage and dredging, perhaps this shows us a glimpse of the future too.

Agreed, this is the future, people will just have to accept responsibility for their choice to live somewhere and accept the flooding risk that goes with it, and not bleat for the PTB to "do something", but to be fair to the farmers etc, I think they are saying that if certain rivers had been dredged the flooding would have been less severe?

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TBH the calls for him to go are just stupid.

Some nimby was on radio two moaning that now, not only had they got their own water, now they were getting everyone elses water.

Its raining...its raining a lot...THAT is not something in the power of a minister in charge of a department with 20 year plans.

FFS!

LOL,,,lol,,LOL

Yes, but if we sacked a minister then the rain would know that we are serious and not to mess with us, this is something out of the days of the pharaohs of ancient egypt.

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Agreed, this is the future, people will just have to accept responsibility for their choice to live somewhere and accept the flooding risk that goes with it, and not bleat for the PTB to "do something", but to be fair to the farmers etc, I think they are saying that if certain rivers had been dredged the flooding would have been less severe?

I know the emotive reaction of the farmers is that more should have been done before. Is there any evidence to support their assertion that there would have been less flooding this winter if certain rivers had been dredged?

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I know the emotive reaction of the farmers is that more should have been done before. Is there any evidence to support their assertion that there would have been less flooding this winter if certain rivers had been dredged?

Well ...

The latest widespread flooding of the Levels is just one in a long record of flood events.

Records show more than a third of the area (70,000 acres or 28,000 ha) was submerged in 1919. In the 2014 flood, it is estimated about 6,500 ha (16,000 acres), or about 10% of the Levels, are under water.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-26080597

The present flooding does provide a convenient pretext for blaming the EU and/or eco-loons though...

[Mind you, it is the BBC, so they're undoubtedly lying.]

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We've had the wettest winter ever recorded and over 99% of rivers in the country are proving to have been pretty well managed by the Environment Agency. It seems to me that the EA are doing a great job in the most challenging circumstances. The EA has been warning that extreme weather will become more common for years but are constantly battling against those in 'denial' or planning authorities that continue to build on floodplains. The EA also has statutory duties with regard to wildlife conservation and providing recreation, which is not always easy to reconcile with flood risk management. With regard to the areas that have been hit by floods, many people make the active choice to live there. They know the risks, they take a chance. Most of the time they are great places to live. There will always be flooding whether its Cumbia, Lewes, Shrewsbury, York, Boscastle and now Somerset. The EA should not be expected to guarantee there will be no flooding and to apologise if there is. With regard to flooding in Somerset, the county name actually means 'summer settlement'. For centuries much of the land that was below sea level was given over to winter floods. With climate change now so obvious and the vast energy costs associated with drainage and dredging, perhaps this shows us a glimpse of the future too.

I think the annoyance is that for weeks there has been no proactive help. I think it's the classic British govt response that it will sort itself out when it stops raining. It hasn't stopped raining and only now does there appear to be a response.

However people are living on flood plains and they are shocked when it does rain constantly and it floods. I wonder what the reaction would be if the EA pointed out the fact that people are living in flood plains and the idea for a flood plain is for it to flood when the river is overwhelmed. I'm sure that would trigger instant calls for resignations.

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Chris Smith refused to dredge the rivers of the Somerset levels because he is stupid, big headed, arrogant and lazy.

You can do nothing about the rain, but if the rivers were dredged it would run away much quicker.

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Chris Smith refused to dredge the rivers of the Somerset levels because he is stupid, big headed, arrogant and lazy.

You can do nothing about the rain, but if the rivers were dredged it would run away much quicker.

Indeed.

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-26078592

Residents of the flood-hit Somerset Levels have accused Environment Agency chairman Lord Smith of "letting everyone down", as he visited the area.

Lord Smith said he had "no intention" of resigning in the face of criticism for not doing more to help but resident Jim Winkworth said he was "bloody mad" not to get an apology from the peer.

Prime Minister David Cameron, who also visited the area, promised: "Everything that can be done will be done."

It comes amid more UK weather warnings.

Video at the link.

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Chris Smith refused to dredge the rivers of the Somerset levels because he is stupid, big headed, arrogant and lazy.

You can do nothing about the rain, but if the rivers were dredged it would run away much quicker.

Well, that's not strictly true, is it? One could, say, form agreements with other nations to limit the amount of greenhouse gases being pumped into the atmosphere that lead to increased rainfall (in the UK) as well as rising sea levels.

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Chris Smith refused to dredge the rivers of the Somerset levels because he is stupid, big headed, arrogant and lazy.

You can do nothing about the rain, but if the rivers were dredged it would run away much quicker.

They were dredged in November.

Since when it has pissed it down more than it has for a long time.

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I find it quite cheering to look at the internet commentary on this subject. We tend to think the UK's turning into a nation of uneducated simpletons, but it turns out that in fact a remarkably large percentage of the population has considerable expertise on the subject of large-scale land drainage. Who'd have thought it?

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You can do nothing about the rain, but if the rivers were dredged it would run away much quicker.

True. However, if the rivers were dredged the water would run faster from sparesly-populated flood plains, and result in more severe flooding at densely populated towns downstream, where there is commercial activity and dense infrastructure.

The EA have been following modern river management techniques, which discourage dredging for exactly this reason. Dredging is not only an expensive procedure, itself, but it makes flooding more likely to hit more expensive areas. (Or at least, that is their explanation).

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Well, that's not strictly true, is it? One could, say, form agreements with other nations to limit the amount of greenhouse gases being pumped into the atmosphere that lead to increased rainfall (in the UK) as well as rising sea levels.

Combination of VI and uptake lag: TPTB are stuck on the "global warming" meme rather than having a well rounded comprehension of the various measured and possible future outcomes of climate change. Many still falsely believe the basic scientific precepts to be widely disputed or are less than bothered by what they perceive as the prospect of the UK being as warm as their favourite holiday destinations, especially given the extent to which our entire economic model relies on CO2 emitting or carbon sink destroying technologies. The frequency of extreme weather events doesn't even figure into their understanding, in fact they're often seen as proof against their simplistic model of "global warming" because they refuse to see climate change as a complex phenomenon (unless it suits them to follow the false syllogism of a climate so complex it cannot be adversely effected).

Essentially their environmental policy works in the same way as their economic policy: protect yourself and your mates to the elimination of all other considerations until forced to acknowledge reality by external events. A black swan climate event is hopefully still a long way off but seems fairly inevitable given current trends, both meteorologically and politically.

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